Management of femoral neck fractures in young adults
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Femoral neck fractures in young adults are uncommon and often the result of high-energy trauma. They are associated with higher incidences of femoral head osteonecrosis and nonunion. Multiple factors can play a significant role in preventing these devastating complications and contribute to a good outcome. While achieving an anatomic reduction and stable internal fixation are imperative, other treatment variables, such as time to surgery, the role of capsulotomy and the fixation methods remain debatable. Open reduction and internal fixation through a Watson-Jones exposure is the recommended approach. Definitive fixation can be accomplished with three cannulated or noncannulated cancellous screws. Capsulotomy in femoral neck fractures remains a controversial issue and the practice varies by trauma program, region and country. Until there is conclusive data (i.e. prospective and controlled) we recommend performing a capsulotomy. The data available is inconclusive on whether this fracture should be operated emergently, urgently or can wait until the next day. Until there is conclusive data available, we recommend that surgery should be done on an urgent basis. The key factors in treating femoral neck fractures should include early diagnosis, early surgery, anatomic reduction, capsular decompression and stable internal fixation.
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